This drama critic to “Beautiful Man” was originally posted by Sukbar, here is the link: http://tieba.baidu.com/p/2770823572?share=9105 It is a very objective view to the drama. Enjoy reading it.
Article Credit: 糖豆家隔壁
Photo Credit: as Tagged
English Translation by Wen Lee from ECI
Haven’t taken so much effort to write a drama review in a long time. Was watching another drama on Qiyi, happened to see Beautiful Man on home page & went in, unexpectedly finished watching 10 episodes. Feel that I haven’t seen this type of male lead in a long time, touched something in me deeply, so want to write something.
At the beginning, I really hated Dokgo Mate’s role. The biggest feeling is childishness. This type of childishness is expressed in two ways. One is handling matters. From the 1st episode, in order to help his mother share the load, actually live off a successful woman. Because he was robbed of his shop rental by a conman, decided to give up. This type of attitude & method in dealing with life is not what a grown up man should have. On the other hand when dealing with feelings, neglecting his mother, when he’s with women mainly shows off himself, really is only a child. In idol dramas, male leads might have some imperfections, maybe cold & proud, or mean, but they are mature inside. Such as in YAB where JKS played in, Hwang Tae Kyung helped Go Minam to cover up her identity several times, and when dealing with national witch (Uee), always rebuffed her beautifully. But Dokgo Mate is so differently childish.
But this childish man reminds me of Meteor Garden’s Dow Ming Si (Note: Taiwan Boys Over Flowers in 2000). When Mate said to Jae Hee ‘I like it you have money’, I thought of Dow in the 2nd episode said to San Tchai (the female lead role) ‘even if you want Eiffel Tower, I can buy it for you’, this type of childish mentality is very similar. But, one thing for sure, although these two men are unworldly but they have one thing common: sincerity. Mate’s feelings towards women are strange. From the 1st episode, it looks as if he’s a playboy attracting women with his good looks. If he’s really a playboy, then he should understand women very well. But from the way he chased after the Electric Fairy, it’s obvious he was sometimes in test mode. Even got scared when Kim In-Joon gave him the room key. If he managed to win the heart of a glamorous superstar like Myomi it would be very beneficial to him, but what we see from his eyes is not desire but pity.
Suddenly , I understand why Jae Hee likes him so much. With women, he doesn’t disregard them like clothes, on the contrary, his love or hatred for each woman is clear. With Kim Botong who stubbornly follows him, he does not show any dislike. A male lead who receives love from many usually hates women who chase after him blindly, especially it’s a very ordinary & weird woman. When he needs help, he will think of her at the 1st instance. When he was explaining to Jae Hye about sale of socks, he was comparing with Botong in his heart. With Jae Hee who loves him deeply, he’s like a child lying on her thighs saying he’s tired. With Electric Fairy, he’s even so stupid to say to her at the beginning he wants to learn from her how to manipulate people, doesn’t even know how to hide. With Kim In Jung, he’s respectful, with Myomi it’s pity, with Yula it’s trust, with Gae Jin it’s hatred. Jae Hye treasures him, Botong at the moment is worshiping mode. With so many women around him, his heart is lonely, no wonder he loves himself. If he doesn’t love himself, who else would? Underneath this frivolous exterior, is a simple innocent heart.
In ‘Love Art’, Ferom said ‘a mature person should be his mother & his father’. That means he should have in him feelings of his mother & sensibility of his father. To create a character is not hard, but to be able to create a character which can clearly explain the reason for it is not everyone can do so. With Dokgo Mate, can see clearly lack of sensibility & feelings are overload. This is because he only received lots of mother love but lack of father love. Mate treats every woman with sincerity, this is mainly because he was loved by his mother. In the first two episodes, there were a lot of mother & son screen time, it was to pave the way for Mate’s character change later on. I feel that BM has delivered this very clearly in comparison to traditional idol dramas where lead roles are usually roughly explained.
In contrast to Mate’s childishness, although Botong is innocent but she is much more mature than Mate in handling people & matters. It can be said one of the unique points in this drama is not the traditional male lead protecting female lead, female lead make the male lead understand love. In this drama, although the female lead is stupidly crazy about the male lead, but she is not covered by the male lead’s shining light. In the traditional girl chase boy drama, when female lead sees male lead will become emotional, red-faced, heart beating, feeling he is the star & I am nothing. But Botong is not like this. She will say to Mate ‘looks like you’re really sick!’. On Christmas night, she chose to go to David Choi’s concert, can say although she has her love but she is independent, has her own judgments & choices, and not a slave of the male lead. This type of female lead, I have seen in ‘Love Starts from Confession’ which was a re-make from ‘Playful Kiss’ (Note: Taiwan drama). But the female lead in ‘Love Starts from Confession’ is different from the lead in ‘Playful kiss’. She is not clumsy like her, she has her own dreams, using her creativity to start her business. I think Botong is this type of normal but not ordinary girl.
Silly but with depth, it’s what’s special about “Beautiful Man” but it’s what also kills it for not being able to become fashionable culture. In this era where humanity is gradually fading, the general public rather follow sweet & romantic stories, because they lack so they yearn for. But not everybody likes fast food, there are always people who are willing to slowly discover, to appreciate, like Mate’s inner light, bit by bit will discover.
Let’s talk a bit about JKS. Knew him through Drama “You Are Beautiful”, know about his stories. Gives me the feeling that he never follows the norm. With such good qualities, his success would not be just this if he had gone through makeover by a professional entertainment company. But he didn’t. In this era where ppl follow big groups, to choose to be on his own is surely hard to be able to be recognised. But no matter how he chooses, as long as he himself does not regret, I think this kind of life is rich & brilliant.
Artists depend on entertainment companies, not only of their economic abilities, most importantly they have huge media connection network. No matter how capable an artist, if there is no one to help you promote, it’s hard to make a name. Those dramas which have high ratings aren’t necessary good dramas, but if many TV channels are airing it, you will naturally sit down & watch it. (Note: In China, some dramas are aired on various channels throughout the country at the same time I gather.) There are many products we have to accept, they also have heavyweights in the back. Solely relying on an actor will not be able to hold the market. Don’t forget, TV dramas also are products. So, unless one is very powerful on his own, otherwise must depend on the complicated media network. But JKS is such a solo fighter. In other words, he does not follow the rules of the game, of course will receive so called ‘punishment’. Sadly, how many media companies really do things according to their conscience?
Most K-dramas follow the prince & cinderella style corny stories is bcos the directors also understand, the viewers have formed this mentality model, even if they lose, the loss will be limited. But this drama (BM) follows a different path, it surely will be a challenge. It really is not bad, but to call it a classic, I don’t think it is enough. But it is a new attempt for K-dramas, it’s worth acknowledgement. To choose something different to the norm of course will have to bear risk. JKS himself is a good example. I have heard IU’s songs before but not seen her dramas. Always felt she’s a young & cute singer, unexpectedly her acting is not bad. The two big leads’ willingness to change their images to play these roles, can see their courage. So what are you (note: eels) worrying about? Those who are in the ent ind, who doesn’t have a steel heart? Good or bad is never decided by figures, only time will tell the real quality. Just follow your star in a good way, in such a cold ent ind, it’s the fans who are the artist’s real family.
You (eels) said he doesn’t care about ratings, I have seen that on Qiyi. Maybe bcos what you fans say can be emotional, let me say objectively, what he did, those who understand will understand, those who don’t will just think he is stupid – if he knows then why do it? Actually, ppl always follow their own judgment, it’s good you (eels) help to promote, but have to understand many ppl do not judge an artist by quality, they only believe what they see as the ‘truth’. If a person can emit light, even if in the dark, nothing will cover it. To post about his growing up etc sometimes may make ppl feel it is an excuse. These true backgrounds are probably the most treasured wealth an artist gives to his fans. Passer-bys will move on, they are only watching film, they are just interested in whether the film is exciting or not. How many ppl would care about the story behind the scene. Those who don’t understand will never understand. If he is really good enough, then there will be ppl who are willing to understand him patiently. And actually JKS is quite famous now!